I’ve been preparing for a new year, a new school, and a new role for about two months now, and though the reality of my amazing opportunity hasn’t fully set in, the enormity of the task of preparation is definitely sinking in. A new school means getting to know new people, past practices, partnerships, protocols, policies….and possibilities.
The role is one I’m most definitely excited about: Principal of my old high school! How cool is that!? What a way to celebrate 20 years since I graduated from Marathon High School. In fact, when I graduated, I was selected to be Valedictorian. When I delivered my speech, I took a picture of the audience. I certainly could not have foreseen the future then, but this picture is important to me because seated in the first rows are the educators who helped me get to where I am. Though I won’t have the privilege of working with my former teachers, I’m lucky to have many of them in my circle.
Anyway, the adventure begins this week with setting up my office, getting to know staff, and 2.5 days of learning with colleagues from across our board and though returning to a consistent schedule will be a shock to the system, I’m excited for it. In the meantime, lots of reading and wonderings about:
- What does effective leadership look like at Marathon High School?
- How do I build trusting relationships with my people?
- What can I do to build student engagement to create a positive learning environment?
- How can I work to balance mental health and well-being with academic achievement within the school?
- What don’t I know that I need to know?
There is, I am sure, so many things that I don’t know. I know from my first year as an administrator at B.A. Parker Public School that come the first day, I’ll be hitting the ground running – but that’s a good thing. I think one of the biggest challenges is entering a school where I don’t have the same relationships with people like I had over the past 14 years. For that reason, I think it’s important for me to observe, to listen, to be patient, and to build relationships. I cannot – and will not – go in like a bull in a china shop because that is neither my style nor a system that ever seems to work! I do hope that I will have an opportunity to reflect, to be open, and to be vulnerable on this blog.
I am going to head back to reading, reflecting, and readying myself for this incredible adventure! Stay tuned!